App Store Search Ads Go Live on October 5

Apple announced that it will open App Store Search Ads these days for iPad and iPhone from U.S. for start, after a period of beta version since June. Search Ads is a paid advertising platform from Apple that will help users to find the apps they need and, in the same time, they will make it easier for developers to make their app visible in a market with over 2 million apps, since June, 2016. But, this is not the only great news: Apple offers a promotion of $100 called the “Launch Promo Credit” for developers on their first campaign when they sign up for Search Ads.
If you ask yourself who the eligible developers are, we will show you a snippet from Search Ads Launch Promotion Terms And Conditions, but you have to check it and you have to read the entire file.

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Advantages Of Search Ads

According to Statista, the leading smartphone apps discovery channel of users in the United State in June, 2016 is still Searched App Store with 21% just like the same period, a year ago.

Moreover, Apple underlines that more than 65% of all app downloads in U.S. are coming from app store searches. So, trying App Store Search Ads will give you the opportunity to rise out of the crowd. Another advantage is that you can put a limit and, you can spend the amount of the budget you want. There is no long – term commitment, so you can start or stop whenever you want. The biggest benefit is that your ad is seen by possible users in the exact moment they are looking for an app like yours. This is a great solution to increase the number of your app downloads.

How Does Search Ads Work

If you have an Apple ID and an active app in the Apple App Store, after decided on the budget for the ad, then you are ready to sign up for Search Ads account. The next step is to add a valid credit card and to bid for the ad with a CPT model. After that you will create your ad, but you can’t customize it. In the image below are some examples of App Store Search Ads. The ad will appear on top of search results and it has the blue background with an ad icon. There are different formats, depending on user’s device. An important statement is that the ad won’t appear if it is not a good match for the search, no matter what you are willing to pay. There are two match types: The Broad Match, which is the default match type, and the Exact Match, where you can target specific terms. More details are offered by Apple.

How To Create an App Store Search Ad

Before using Search Ads you have to optimize app icon, app title and screenshots. After that, be very careful with your keywords because they have to be relevant for your app. The limit for keywords is 100 characters and they have to be separated by commas, not spaces. Don’t do keyword stuffing. Unless your brand contains special characters, like “&” or “@”, stay away from them. They are not that “special” for search rankings. Be sure that your app name has less than 50 characters. Keep in mind that your ad will be displayed depending on your App Store Metadata and the number of users that will click on your ad. If the users won’t tap on the ad, it will decrease its frequency, until it will end app not showing it at all. This is why you have to take advantage of their Relative Search Term Popularity Index that will show you the relative number of searches for every keyword for your app. Moreover, using Search Match you will find the keywords related to your app. Search Ads gives you the possibility to set the negative keywords, for which you don’t want users to reach your app. That will keep you far from paying those taps that won’t bring you downloads, because if a user discovers your app by mistake and he doesn’t need it, there are minimal chances to download it, although you will pay for that tap. Another great feature is the default demographic targeting which will make your ad invisible for the users that already downloaded your app. Even more, you can set your demographic targeting category by age, gender, device location or audience. The key is to know your users and what category has the interest to download your app. After that you can check the results in the Search Terms Report. Apple highlights the fact that rates and reviews from users are equally important in search rankings and advice developers to make all easier for users to rate and to connect with them in case of problems or errors. You have to test your campaign for a while to see what is working for you and what is not.

How Is Its Cost Calculated?

First, you have to bid for the ad. The model is CPT (Cost Per Tap) which is, like its name states, the model where a user has to tap on the ad to reach your app page in app store and you will pay for that tap. This is based on a second price auction which will calculate the CPT according to the bid of the nearest competitor. First, you have to decide the maximum sum that you are willing to pay for a customer. Then you have to estimate the percentage of users that will tap on your ad. In the end, calculate the maximum CPT by the formula:
Maximum CPT = (Estimated percentage) X (Maximum Amount For Customer).
We have an example from Apple where the maximum CPT is:
$1 = 40% X $2.50
Be careful, though. If the user is on your app page that doesn’t necessary, mean that he will download your app. So, in the end, all the elements on your app page have to convince him to download it.


October 5 is the day when Apple releases the final version of App Store Search Ads giving developers the opportunity to improve their app appearance and optimizing the search results for the users on Apple App Store. There are some steps for taking advantage of this chance to put your app in front of the others. If you follow them, you can reach a large area of users and you will be able to increase the number of downloads.

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